Jazz and Classical Music Essays

1766 Words Oct 19th, 1999 8 Pages
Jazz and Classical Music

Upon entering a modern record store, one is confronted with a wide variety of choices in recorded music. These choices not only include a multitude of artists, but also a wide diversity of music categories. These categories run the gamut from easy listening dance music to more complex art music. On the complex side of the scale are the categories known as Jazz and Classical music. Some of the most accomplished musicians of our time have devoted themselves to a life-long study of Jazz or Classical music, and a few exceptional musicians have actually mastered both. A comparison of classical and Jazz music will yield some interesting results and could also lead to an appreciation of the abilities needed to perform
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This occurred around the middle to late 19th century. Consequently, the brass instruments are less prominent in the music of Bach, Mozart and Beethoven along with their contemporaries. Late
19th and early 20th century composers make use of a very large orchestra with all the fully developed wind instruments. Some of the master orchestrator/composers of this time were: Wagner, Rimskey-Korsakov, Ravel and
Stravinsky. Currently, composers also make use of the full orchestra but with the addition of increasingly larger percussion sections which add many unique and unheard of sounds than in earlier music.

Early Jazz music was played in small ensembles making use of clarinet, tuba, cornet, baritone, drums, and piano. Dixieland groups of New Orleans had similar instrumentation. During the Swing era, larger groups were employed to achieve more of an orchestral sound. The Big Bands of the this era were predominantly wind orchestras containing alto and tenor sax sections, trumpet and trombone sections, along with piano and drums. When Bop music arrived, the alto saxophone and trumpet were the preferred instruments of the major soloists who were backed up by piano, string bass and drums. With the advent of Fusion, electric instruments such as the electric guitar and keyboard synthesizer became prominent. How has each of these kinds of music been transmitted to later generations of musicians? Early in the evolution of classical music, a system of notation was

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